Cooking Perfect Steak

Patrick Mooney
Cooking Perfect Steak

Whether you are pan-frying or grilling, both are reliable methods for cooking a perfect steak.

Choosing a Steak

Before you can even start cooking you need to choose the steak you are going to cook. You have several options including but not limited to:

  • Rump steak: A good grilling steak.
  • Flank Steak: Best if marinated.
  • Rib Eye: Part of the prime rib, a very tender steak.
  • New York Strip (called a Kansas City Strip in New York): Very tender, good for grilling.
  • Porterhouse: Similar in shape to the T-Bone, the Porterhouse has a t-shaped bone as well but is usually a larger steak with a smaller strip section and a larger loin section.
  • Sirloin: A great grilling steak.
  • T-Bone: Like the porterhouse, this has a t-shaped bone but is a smaller steak with more strip and less loin.
  • Chateaubriand: Cut from the large end of the tenderloin, this steak is served for two people.
  • Filet Mignon: The most tender steak available, cut from the tenderloin.

Depending on how much you have to spend and how you are planning to cook your steak, you can choose accordingly.

Generally speaking, you can cook any steak either in a pan or on the grill. Some steaks, like the rump, sirloin, or New York strip, seem to take to grilling best, but whatever steak you choose you can be sure that grilling it will bring out the best flavor.

Cooking Perfect Steak

Pan frying a steak has certain advantages over grilling. Once the steak has been cooked, you can use the juices and fond in the pan to build a pan sauce, something you can't do if you are grilling the steak. Another advantage to pan frying is you can quickly sear the steak to add color, flavor, and texture and then finish cooking the steak in the oven. This is a particularly good way to cook a ribeye steak and is a great method to use when you are cooking the perfect steak.

Pan Fry Method

Ingredients

  • 1 steak per person
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. Let the steaks come to room temperature.
  2. Just before cooking the steaks, rub both sides with the salt and fresh pepper.
  3. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.
  4. Use a pan that is large enough to hold all of the steaks or you can use a roasting pan if you are making several steaks.
  5. If you are making several steaks, use enough oil to just barely coat the bottom of the pan and place the roasting pan in the oven.
  6. Place just enough oil in the frying pan to barely coat the bottom of the pan.
  7. Place the pan over a medium high heat.
  8. Once the oil begins to shimmer, place the steaks into the pan and do not move them for one minute.
  9. Flip the steaks over, then do not move them for a minute.
  10. Place the steaks in the preheated oven and cook for 5 minutes. More or less depending on the doneness you prefer and the thickness of your steak.
  11. Remove from the oven and let rest for five minutes.
  12. If you like, you can use the juices and fond in the pan to build a pan sauce.

Grilling Method

Grilling is one of the most popular ways of cooking a perfect steak. Grilling steaks is one of the treats of summer and no one can deny that the aroma of a grilling steak is irresistible.

Ingredients

  • 1 steak per person
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat your gas grill or if you are using a coal grill, start the coals about a half hour before you want to start grilling.
  2. Let your steaks come to room temperature.
  3. Spread the hot coals in a single layer.
  4. Rub the grate down with oil.
  5. Place the steaks on the grill and close the lid.
  6. Let the steak cook for about a minute.
  7. Flip the steaks over and close the lid again. Cook for another minute.
  8. Flip the steaks over again, this time cook for three minutes.
  9. Flip again and cook for another three minutes.
  10. Time to cook will vary on the thickness of the steak and the desired doneness.
  11. Let the steaks rest for five minutes before serving.

Is It Done?

Although how done you like your steak is entirely up to you, most steaks are best when served rare to medium rare.

  • Rare - 120 degrees
  • Medium Rare- 125 degrees
  • Medium - 135 degrees
  • Medium well done - 145 degrees
  • Well done - 165 degrees.

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Cooking Perfect Steak